U.S. trade gap declined in February

April 12, 2012 at 1:16 PM

WASHINGTON, April 12 (UPI) -- The U.S. trade deficit dropped in February for the first time in four months, the U.S. Census Bureau said Thursday.

After climbing by $2.2 billion to a revised January figure of $52.5 billion, the trade gap dropped back to $46 billion on exports of $181.2 billion and imports of $227.2 billion, the bureau said.

The trade deficit reflects a slower economy in China, as the trade gap with the export nation fell from $26 billion to $19.4 billion.

With the second most critical U.S. trading partner, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, the deficit fell from $10 billion to $6.4 billion.

The trade deficit with the European Union also fell significantly, dropping from $8.5 billion to $5.9 billion. With Japan, the gap rose from $6.2 billion to $7 billion.

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